Halcones

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Halcones

Escuadrilla de Alta Acrobacia Halcones ("Hawks High Aerobatics Squad"), known simply as the 'Hawks' (Halcones), is an active group of nine officers of the Chilean Air Force who are trained specifically for aerobatics. One of the Halcones signature moves is recreating the Chilean flag in the air using smoke. The team may be likened to the British Royal Air Force's Red Arrows for their affinity in complex, high-risk, aviation-based manoeuvers.

The team flies Extra 300 aircraft models. The Halcones have held demonstrations in Ecuador, Brazil, United Kingdom, Belgium, United States, Canada, Israel, France, Peru and Bolivia, among others.

The Halcones making aerobatics.

Aircraft[edit]

Pitts S2A[edit]

1981-1990

The Air Force acquired models S-2A and S-2S (for the plane alone). This agile biplane - American made - is powered by a 200 hp Lycoming engine. The S-2S with a 260 hp engine.

The Halcones used the Pitts for about 400 events in their home country and abroad. During these years the notoriety of the pilots grew in Chile and resulted in many invitations to international events, as following:

Years Event
1985 Ecuatorian Air Force Anniversary.
1987 International Air Tattoo, Inglaterra.
1988 Brazilian Air Force Anniversary.
1989 Sanicole Air Show, Bélgica.
1989 International Air Tattoo and 4th. Anniversary of NATO, England.

The last presentation was made on February 25, 1990.

Extra 300[edit]

1990 - 2003 The Air Force aware of the new and advancing aeronautic technology decided to replace the Pitts for a new plane: the Extra 300.

This German produced monoplane-wing media is powered by a Textron Lycoming engine of 300 hp. 2700 rpm. 6-cylinder and a 3-propeller blades of wood covered with carbon fiber. The two-seater plane is built from 60% composite materials and 40% of metal, and features a load factor and G + 10 - 10 G, roll rate of 360 ° per second, maximum weight 950 kg. The plane was designed to make various aerobatic maneuvers, but can only sustain 4 minutes of inverted flight.

The squad made approximately 400 presentations with the Extra 300 planes in Chile (from Arica to Punta Arenas, as well as Easter Island) and abroad. The "Halcones" presentations during this time resulted in numerous invitations issued to perform, as follows:

Years Event
1990 U.S.A Springfield Air Rendezvous.
1993 England International Air Tattoo.
1995 Canada Abbotsford International Air Show.
1995 U.S.A Open House Air Show.
1997 U.S.A Anniversary USAF.
1998 Israel, Anniversary Israel Air Force.
1998 France, First World patrols Acrobat.
2001 Ecuador, Anniversary Ecuador Air Force.
2001 Peru School of Aviation.
2002 Brasil Anniversary N° 50 Esquadrilha da Fumaça".
2002 England International Air Tattoo.
2007 50% Anniversary of Bolivian Air Force.
2012 Brasil Anniversary N° 60 Esquadrilha Da Fumaça".

The last presentation made by the Extra 300 plane was on May 13, 2012.

The High Aerobatics Squad "Halcones" achieved many important distinctions with the Extra 300 aircraft and skilled Air Forces pilots.

Extra 300 L[edit]

2003 - Today.

Because of the success achieved with the material Extra 300, the Team began flying the new Extra 300 L. The Extra 300 L resulted in modifications and updates to the older Extra 300 model.

This low-wing monoplane of German origin is powered by a Textron Lycoming engine of 300 hp. 2700 rpm. 6-cylinder and 4-propeller blades of wood coated with carbon fiber. The two-seater plane is made 60% of composite materials and 40% of metal, and features a load factor and G + 10 - 10 G, why roll of 420 ° per second, in the silencer tailpipe, maximum weight 950 kg., this version was also designed for acrobatics, but still with only 4 minute inverted flight time.

The first presentation material Extra 300 L was the February 29, 2003.

Hawks Aerobatic Team Pilots(2014)[edit]

Pilots Callsign Role Rank
Pilot Nº 1 Cristian Bolton Buda Pilot, Team Leader Squadron Commander and Squadron Leader
Pilot Nº 2 Francisco Gonzalez Gladiador Pilot, Right Wing Lieutenant
Pilot Nº 3 Pablo Herbias Hercules Pilot, Left Wing Lieutenant
Pilot Nº 4 Nicolas Trujillo Truco Pilot, Slot Lieutenant
Pilot Nº 5 Cristobal Contreras Capone Pilot, Solo Lieutenant
Pilot Nº 6 Pablo Schönherr Sirio Pilot, Student Captain
Pilot Nº 7 César Antonio Santis T. Saturno Public Relations Officer Commander (Rv)
Pilot Nº 8 Cristián De la Fuente S. Demente Public Relations Officer Lieutenant (Rv)

Hawks Aerobatic Team Pilots (2012)[edit]

Pilots Callsign Role Rank
Pilot Nº 1 Victor Gallardo (2005 - 2012) Gotico Pilot, Team Leader Captain and Squadron Leader
Pilot Nº 2 Joseph Suez (2008 - 2013) Swat Pilot, Right Wing Lieutenant
Pilot Nº 3 Felipe Casasempere (2009 - 2013) Cougar Pilot, Left Wing Lieutenant
Pilot Nº 4 Pablo Herbias (2012 - Now) Hercules Pilot, Slot Lieutenant
Pilot Nº 5 Eduardo Varas De La Fuente (2009 - 2013) Voltron Pilot, Solo Captain
Pilot Nº 7 César Antonio Santis T. Saturno Public Relations Officer Commander (Rv)
Pilot Nº 8 Cristián De la Fuente S. Demente Public Relations Officer Lieutenant (Rv)

Awards[edit]

Throughout a 31 year tenure, the High Aerobatics Squad "Halcones (Hawks)" has visited countries like Ecuador, Brazil, Canada, USA, England, Belgium, Israel, France and Peru.

Best Air Display[edit]

This prize was awarded in the city of Springfield, Illinois, USA, 1990, in honor of the presentation made by the then new aircraft, the Extra-300. The High Aerobatics Squad "Halcones (Hawks)" Team was the first to use this aircraft for their demonstrations. The prized was awarded to the squad after one year experience in the Extra - 300.

Sir Douglas Bader[edit]

This prize was awarded to the squad in their second visit to England for the International Air Tattoo of 1993. On this occasion, the Hawkss display earned the most prestigious prize of the festival.

Best Individual Flying Demonstration[edit]

In 1993, during participation in the International Air Tattoo in England the squad received the prize for best presentation of a Team abroad, the airplane "only" training was recognized with the distinction as "Best Individual Presentation."

50 anniversary of the USAF[edit]

As part of the ceremony for the commemoration of the U.S. Air Force in 1997, the High Aerobatics Squad "Halcones(Hawks)" was invited to participate in the celebration in recognition of their prestigious career.

50 anniversary of IAF[edit]

In 1998, during the 50° anniversary of the Israel Air Force, the High Aerobatics Squad "Halcones (Hawks)" was invited to participate in aerial events.

Ives Duval[edit]

This prize was awarded in the town of Evreux, France, in July 1998, during the First World Championship Patrol Acrobat, held to mark the centenary of the Aeroclub de France. For this festival thirteen countries were invited with their respective aerial teams, with the High Aerobatics Squad "Halcones (Hawks)" chosen as the "Best of the Best". The pilots participating in this event were tasked with electing the winning team; the prize was awarded by the French Defense Minister, accompanied by the Commander in Chief of the Air Force.

Incidents[edit]

On August 8, 2007 the number 5 plane piloted by Captain Mario Costa had to make an emergency landing after hitting another plane in the group during an exercise. At landfall, the plane hit a parked vehicle, the pilot was rescued without injuries.

On November 9, 2011, during a routine training exercise on "El Bosque", and after a tour across the country, pilot N°3, Lieutenant Cristián Padilla, 28 years old, crashed on his aircraft (Extra-300L), resulting in the death of the pilot. The exact causes of the accident are still being investigated.[1]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

  • (Spanish) Halcones - Official website.

The Red Arrows